|Manfredonia's effigy of the Saint|
So a couple years passed and Bishop Lorenzo hadn't done much about Michael's chapel. Odoacer, the self-proclaimed King of Italy, showed up at the gates of Siponto demanding submission and tribute. The Siponti were hard-pressed to keep him out and suddenly Michael, the commander of the angelic legions, was a popular guy. Lorenzo negotiated a three-day truce with Odoacer, during which he prayed like a sudden convert. At the end of three days, the battle resumed, the invaders driven off, and the town saved.
|The same effigy, on parade in Manfredonia|
His Holiness instructed the bishop to fast and pray for three days and then to go into the cave and consecrate it. As he was praying, the Archangel showed up a third time and said there was no need for consecration as he, Michael, had already dedicated the place. Back up the mountain they went and into the cave, where Mass was said in the brand new chapel.
Lorenzo had one more occasion to save the city. Totila the Ostrogothic King was raiding. The bishop must have been an old man by then, but he rallied for one more miracle. He asked for a meeting with Totila so he could make the case for sparing Siponti. The Ostrogoths sent him an untamable horse and told him to show up on it if he wanted parley. The Bishop calmed the beast, mounted it, and rode out to meet Totila. Duly impressed, the Ostrogoths moved on to towns that weren't protected by Michael the Archangel.